Route 5 - California to Washington - Has 4 Sections

750 Total Miles

Route 5 of the Oregon Back Country Discovery Route is a great adventure into Oregon's incredibly diverse and beautiful less-traveled roads. This allows adventurers to experience a very little traveled part of Oregon's vast, varied and incredible back country. For the majority of its 750 miles, the BCDR elevation ranges from 4000 feet plus to 6000 feet plus. On the route, one will travel from the high open meadows with Aspen and mixed Fir at the California border (6000 plus feet), to the high desert sand dunes of Christmas Valley (4000 plus feet), and into the lush conifer forests of northern Oregon. The BCDR has commercial services available approximately every 100 miles with street-legal vehicles needed for access. Campgrounds are available along the route. Due to the elevations the route is a late Spring, Summer adventure, depending on snow arrival in the Fall and departure in the Spring. The route is accessible at many places as it crosses highways and secondary roads.

This BCDR is divided into four sections. Each section is represented by a different color on the map. Maps for each section are offered individually. The maps are offered in a laser copier printed 8.5" X 11" format. The maps have road number and GPS points for easy navigation without on-ground signs.

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Granite Oregon Hidden History

Granite built this power plant to provide electricity to the town of Granite. The water supply located high in the surrounding mountains was diverted by the wood water line down to the power plant. It was forced through the very small nozzle against the water wheel to turn the generator and produce electricity. We were fortunate to visit on a day to learn of its recent history. Do a search and you will find pictures of old Granite and can see the power lines stringing across the town.

After years of neglect the building had suffered and the walls were leaning out almost to the point of collapse. A person we meet, sorry forgot his name, had taken the saving of the power plant on as a personal project. He involved the National Guard to help get the walls pushed back upright and build a new roof. The interior shows a very personal touch at the renewing of the Generator set. On a recent visit we have seen the signs where this person passed in his sleep and now the building set locked with an unknown future. Just one of the hidden treasures to be discovered on Route 5.

Why do we offer maps instead of GPS routes? Safety. The GPS companies discourage using GPS units as the only means of navigation. Stories of GPS unit failures are easy to come by. Reports of vehicle failures on the BCDR have been heard and experienced. We strongly recommend one carry Forest Service maps as well. Your journey will be one with few if any contacts with others outside your party. One needs to plan for being self-sufficient. Traveling with others is highly recommended. If one’s means of transport fails, it can be a really, really long hike, and it could be many days before someone comes along, if at all. Some areas have cell phone reception but should not be counted on. If it becomes necessary to find civilization in a hurry, for any reason, you will be thankful for all the maps and resources along with you.

Thanks to all you supporters who have purchased Back Country Maps. Your support is the only support we receive. Beware of those who are ripping off the BCDR system by offering goods not sanctioned. It hurts all of us with on-going development of new and expanded routes.

GPX waypoints available upon request at time of purchase of map. Delivered by email after notice of map received.

Section 1. 145 Route miles. California Border to North of Summer Lake.

Section 2. 232 Route miles. North of Summer Lake, South of Seneca. 

Section 3. 162 Route miles. Seneca to Granite. 

Section 4. 211 Route miles. Granite to Washington. 

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